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24 Sep 2012

Chinese connection for Ireland

A group of top journalists from China – including Chen Ting, one of the most popular travel bloggers in China, and a representative of SINA Corporation, the largest online media company in China – visited Ireland last week, as guests of Tourism Ireland and Bord Bia.

The journalists were here to experience at first-hand some of the many things to see and do here for feature stories they are researching about holidays and the wonderful food on offer here. During their time here, the journalists enjoyed a walking tour of Cork city, taking in the English Market, where they met fishmonger Pat O’Connell. Their packed programme also included the Jameson Whiskey Experience at Midleton and a tour of Ballymaloe Cookery School and gardens. They also visited the National Stud and Japanese Gardens in Kildare; the Baileys Farm, Glendalough and Powerscourt in Co Wicklow; Trinity College and the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin; as well as Birr Castle, the Rock of Cashel and the Cliffs of Moher.

Susan Li, Tourism Ireland China, said: “Visits such as this are extremely important, helping to deliver extensive coverage for Ireland through the media in China. They are a fantastic way of highlighting the island of Ireland, bringing the destination to the attention of millions of potential Chinese holidaymakers. With 2 million Chinese people visiting Europe each year, this is a significant emerging tourism market and an important one for the island of Ireland to tap into. Tourism Ireland is very active right now in markets like China, working to raise the profile of Ireland as a premier holiday and business tourism destination. Press visits like this are an invaluable part of that promotional effort.”

Tourism Ireland’s busy programme of activity to grow tourism from China involves co-operative campaigns with airlines and influential tour operators to ensure Ireland features prominently in itineraries and travel brochures; hosting familiarisation visits for Chinese travel agents and tour operators around the island of Ireland; as well as working closely with travel and lifestyle journalists, to ensure the island of Ireland features extensively in the media in China.